2 November 2020
At BT Security, we work to keep nation-states, governments, FTSE 500 companies, our business and millions of our customers safe from cyber-attack. For over 50 years, we’ve been at the forefront of cybersecurity, and it’s one of the fascinating parts of our business. We are the Protectors, working closely with law enforcement agencies around the world.
A career at BT Security is challenging and rewarding. It’s hard to underestimate the sheer breadth and depth of our work. Our teams collaborate across the globe, sharing intelligence and working as one to prevent hundreds of thousands of cyberattacks each month.
The statistics around cyberattacks make stark reading. A business falls victim to a ransomware attack every 40 seconds, and an average of around 1.4 million phishing websites are created every month. Over 100,000 malware samples are detected every day —that’s more than one a second. In addition to over 4,000 cyber-attacks happening every day, there are around 3 million suspect emails sent out every month.
Working from 16 accredited global security locations, BT Security works 24/7/365, with Managing Director Kevin Brown overseeing a team of over 3,000 people. Collaboration is critical, as Kevin explains, "BT Security is one of the fastest-growing parts of our business. We have to work collaboratively, not only within our own organisation but in partnership with companies and governments, and the wider security industry, to share threat data and increase collective resilience."
Roles within BT Security are varied and challenging, requiring a wide range of different skills, experiences and backgrounds. But everyone has a rewarding part to play in the collaborative effort to combat risk. We caught up with just a few of our Protectors - Cybersecurity graduate Gareth, Contract Security Manager graduate Helena, and Marcus, a Systems Engineering Consultant - to learn about their unique and diverse experiences and how they work collaboratively.
Follow the sun
As one of the largest providers of connectivity for many organisations, our global role as protectors is of the utmost importance to everyone, but there's not a playbook for every situation. So we need to be agile and work very collaboratively to find a solution. Gareth is currently in his first year of our Cyber Security Graduate Programme after studying Computer Forensics and Security at university. Based at our Skelmersdale offices in the North-West of the UK, explains how his team operates. "We have a ‘follow the sun’ system, so we are protecting our customers and our networks day in day out all year round, globally. Each day I am given responsibility for a particular workload: Feeding into the team important information and working together on anything out of the ordinary.
"When I finish for the day, I handover to colleagues that are coming in for an overnight shift and to colleagues in other countries. We have team calls every morning and evening, and there’s a handover document created with details of important developments for reference and to avoid any confusion. It’s a very collaborative place to work. We use message boards on Microsoft Teams to ask and answer questions from one another, and there’s always someone with the expertise you need to help you find the solution to your problem."
Teamwork that makes a real difference
Working in over 180 countries brings a vast range of opportunities for career progression and learning. Whether curious about a career in cybersecurity or an experienced professional, we’re always looking for those with the desire, potential and commitment to playing a real part in keeping countries, businesses and individuals safe from cyber-attack.
Delivering cybersecurity solutions for our customers involves a team with different kinds of expertise, fulfilling several requirements. A Contract Security Manager, like Helena, based in Birmingham, for example, will ensure we have the appropriate security clearances from the customer for those working on the contract. They’ll be responsible for risk management, patching, and the management of penetration tests, as well as being available for any security-related questions from the rest of the team. There’s a multitude of things for them to consider and solve, and it’s a challenging and vital role in our operation. After studying Computer Science with a year in industry at Birmingham University, Helena is on our graduate scheme. She enjoys excellent support from her colleagues to help her keep all the plates spinning. "My manager is a real support, always willing to answer my questions no matter how silly I think they are. in the beginning, it was a great introduction to my new team, and I now know that I can go to any of them if I have any kind of issue."
With great leadership and an energetic and hard-working team, there’s a buzz at BT Security that’s infectious and rewarding. Marcus, a Systems Engineering Consultant, explains, "In my role I know I’m making a difference in the world, at the forefront of technology that people and businesses rely on every day. I work in a small project team day-to-day, but I know I’m part of a much bigger team. We all work together to support one another and deliver the best for our customers. The rapid rate of technological change is a challenge, but it’s one of the best things about my role because I am continually learning about new technologies, which I love. After my Computer Science degree, I wanted a position with more breadth than just software engineering, and I’ve had plenty of opportunities to develop my skill set at BT Security.
"I collaborate daily with colleagues to focus in on a customer’s needs or concerns. The whole business is full of people with expertise in specific areas of cybersecurity, and there’s never a problem with chatting with them and enlisting their help to solve a problem. Plus by being collaborative and pursuing every opportunity that comes my way I’ve worked numerous technical teams, continuity management teams, moved into team leadership and helped our talent attraction teams with finding more people to join us."